Modularization in the Car Industry

Akira Takeishi and Takahiro Fujimoto

in The Business of Systems Integration

Published in print November 2003 | ISBN: 9780199263226
Published online January 2005 | e-ISBN: 9780191718830 | DOI:
Modularization in the Car Industry

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Analyses modularisation in the world auto industry. Modularisation has involved architectural changes in product, production, and supplier systems in the industry. As an attempt to understand such multi‐faceted, complex processes, this chapter proposes a conceptual framework that sees development/production activities as multiple hierarchies of products, processes, and inter‐firm boundaries that are interlinked. Using this framework and drawing on case studies and questionnaire survey data, the chapter examines the on‐going processes of modularisation in the industry and argues that tensions exist among the three hierarchies, and such tensions may lead to further changes in product, production, and supplier‐system architectures.

Keywords: inter‐firm hierarchies; automotive industry; modularity; outsourcing; product; production; systems integration

Chapter.  8471 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Economic Systems

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